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Social Development Link Newsletter (SDLN) June 2012

Social Development Link is an Online Newsletter published by the Civil Society and Outreach Unit of the Division for Social Policy and Development. It aims at providing a sharp and synthetic summary of major activities carried out by DSPD.

As its title shows, the newsletter will serve as a link between DSPD and its major partners, from civil society actors to social development practitioners and scholars. This is an electronic publication - no printed edition is generated.

In this Issue

Feature Articles 

arrowThe old model is broken. We need to create a new one
arrowRio+20: from environment to sustainable development
arrowConcluding session, Permanent Forum says impact of racist ‘Doctrine of Discovery’
arrowYoung people continue to be the hardest hit by the job crisis

Expert Group Meetings

arrowExpert Group Meeting on the Human Rights of Older Persons 
Expert Group Meeting on "Good Practices in Family Policy Making: Family Policy Development, Monitoring and Implementation: Lessons Learnt"

Latest Publications

Calendar of Events


The old model is broken. We need to create a new one

“Worldwide, more than 400 million new jobs will be needed over the next decade. That means that policy-makers must get serious, now, about generating decent employment,” said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the high-level thematic debate on The State of the World Economy and Finance and its Impact on Development, held on 17 May. “It is time to recognize that human capital and natural capital are every bit as important as financial capital,” he added.

The event lasted two days and was organised around four thematic roundtable discussions, each focusing on different issues, such as combating unemployment, debt sustainability and managing inflation, improving trade and investment, and increasing transparency and predictability in the financial sector. It was organised to attract heads of governments, finance ministers, as well as heads of organizations, regional and central banks, so that they can share experience and offer views on ways to resolve the economic crisis and improve global financial situation. Set up as an informal setting, the high-level debate encouraged a lively exchange of differing ideas on global economic and financial issues. “Let us face the facts: the old model is broken. We need to create a new one – a new model for dynamic growth,” said Ban Ki-moon.

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Rio+20: from environment to sustainable development


1972 – Principles and Institutions

The United Nations Conference on the Human Environment  held from 5–16 June in Stockholm, Sweden, was the first major international meeting addressing environmental issues in the context of human development.  The Conference adopted a Declaration of 26 Principles. Principle 5 stated that “non-renewable resources of the Earth must be employed in such a way as to guard against the danger of their future exhaustion and to ensure that benefits from such employment are shared by all mankind.” The Meeting adopted an «Action Plan for the Human Environment” and led to the foundation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), as well as to the establishment of Environment departments. The world counted barely 10 ministries of environment in 1972 and ten times more a decade later.  Two Heads of Government have attended the Conference: Prime Ministers Olof Palme of Sweden and Indira Gandhi of India, who famously declared that “Poverty is the worst form of pollution.” 

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Concluding session, Permanent Forum says impact of racist ‘Doctrine of Discovery’

Concluding session, Permanent Forum says impact of racist ‘Doctrine of Discovery’

Lamenting the enduring manifestations of the “Doctrine of Discovery” and other morally condemnable, socially unjust and racist policies used for centuries by colonizers as legal justification to disenfranchise indigenous peoples and seize their lands, the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues urged the rejection of such “nefarious” dogmas, and encouraged measures that would redefine relations between native and aboriginal peoples and the State based on justice.

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Young people continue to be the hardest hit by the job crisis

Young people continue to be the hardest hit by the job crisis

In both developed and developing countries, youth unemployment and underemployment rates have reached alarming levels.  According to the latest figures from the International Labour Organization, an unprecedented 81 million young people were unemployed and many more are underemployed and working in jobs of poor quality.

The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) held a youth forum,“Creating a Sustainable Future: Empowering Youth with Better Job Opportunities” on 4 May 2012 at the United Nations Headquarters, New York City. This event was organized jointly by UN DESA and the Department of Public Information (DPI).

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Expert Group Meetings

Expert Group Meeting on the Human Rights of Older Persons

OHCHR and UNDESA conveyed a three-day Expert Meeting on the human rights of older persons in New York, 29 to 31 May 2012, to precede the third working session of the open-ended working group. The meeting was open to Member States and other stakeholders as observers, it aimed at informing the debate from a substantive human rights perspective by addressing urgent and relevant gaps in the respect, protection and fulfillment of human rights of older persons.

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DSPD Focal Point on Family organized and Expert Group Meeting on "Good Practices in Family Policy Making: Family Policy Development, Monitoring and Implementation: Lessons Learnt", New York, 15-17 May 2012. The meeting was convened as part of preparations for the twentieth anniversary of the International Year of the Family, 2014.

Read more..



Latest Major Publications

World Economic Situation and Prospects, Mid-2012 

The latest report shows that despite some signs of improvement, the world economic situation and prospects continue to be challenging. After a slowdown in 2011, global economic growth will likely remain moderate in 2012, with most regions expanding at a below-potential pace. Due to restrained growth, the jobs crisis continues, with global unemployment still above its pre-crisis level and unemployment in the euro area rising rapidly.

The euro area debt crisis remains the biggest threat to the world economy. A worsening of the crisis would likely be associated with serious turmoil on financial markets and a sharp rise in global risk aversion, leading to a decrease in economic activity in developed countries, which would impact upon developing countries and economies in transition. 

For more information, please visit: http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/policy/publications/index.shtml 

    Rio+20 Newsletter: Making it Happen
    Volume 3, Issue 5 of the ‘Rio+20: Making it Happen’ newsletter includes  two feature articles entitled ‘Rio+20 Partnerships Forum: Seeking actions to build-up further cooperation’ and ‘Five more days to negotiate the Outcome Document: 29 May to 2 June’ alongside information on registration for Rio+20, how to join the Rio+20 Dialogues, voluntary commitments, and much more. For more information: http://www.uncsd2012.org/rio20/newsletter.html

    Enable Newsletter
    The April issue of the ‘ENABLE’ newsletter is now available. ENABLE is prepared by DSPD Focal Point on Disability, with input from UN offices, agencies, funds and programmes, and civil society. View full issue: http://www.un.org/disabilities/documents/newsletter/april2012.doc

    Youth Flash Newsletter
    The May issue of ‘Youth Flash’ is now available. Youth Flash is a service of DSPD Focal Point on Youth to help keep the public informed about the work of the UN on youth issues. It is prepared with input from UN offices, agencies, funds and programmes, and from youth organizations all over the world. View full issue at: http://social.un.org/index/Youth/YouthFlashNewsletter/2012/May.aspx    

    UN CountryStats app: for iPhones and iPads (Download free of charge)
    Adapted from the print version of the World Statistics Pocketbook, the UN CountryStats app for iPhones and iPads is available for download free of charge from the App store. Data on various key economic, social and environmental indicators for 216 countries and areas can be viewed in table format for each individual country, and comparisons of up to three countries at a time can be made, by indicator, and displayed as bar graphs. For more information: http://unstats.un.org/unsd/pubs/gesgrid.asp?id=442